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University of Calgary Climate of Equity

It is important to note that the university has a history of implementing positive policies and practices related to employment equity and has made significant progress towards establishing and maintaining a climate supportive of equity for both staff and students. Many university policies and offices complement and build on our commitment to diversity and employment equity.

We have described a few of these practices and initiatives below.

The Office of Diversity, Equity and Protected Disclosure - Advancing the core values of collaboration, communication, support and excellence which underlie the university's strategic direction, Eyes High, serving as a centralized resource to all members of the university community and providing training and awareness raising initiatives regarding issues of equity and diversity, the ODEPD also functions as the central point of contact for dealing with protected disclosures, including those concerned with alleged breaches of research integrity.

The university has an important policy entitled the Statement on Principles of Conduct. This statement applies to all members of the University community - including students, faculty, administrators, any category of staff, practicum supervisors, examiners, and volunteers. This statement applies in all situations where the persons are acting in their University capacities, whether or not on the University's property. It also applies to visitors or any other persons on University property, and to persons with whom the University contracts for services. It also requires those persons appointed by the University to positions of leadership and authority to have particular responsibility, not only for their own conduct, but also for ensuring, to the extent of their authority and ability:

  • That a positive and productive learning and working environment is created and maintained
  • That conflicts and concerns are addressed in a positive, timely, reasonable, and effective manner
  • That persons within their jurisdiction are informed of their rights and responsibilities with respect to conduct

The University of Calgary has a document entitled Guidelines for Administrators When Acting on Concerns about Conduct which is available on the Human Resources website. This document was developed to assist managers and academic leaders in responding to concerns about conduct when there are no established procedures for dealing with a particular concern. The nature of concerns about conduct can vary widely, involving numerous and diverse considerations. These guidelines are intended to provide advice and counsel on fair and reasonable procedures and are a useful supplement to established policies and procedures, such as Sexual Harassment and Student Misconduct. While these guidelines do not override those procedures, they may be used as additional detail, as long as they do not conflict with the other established procedures.

The university has a website dedicated to providing information and resources to students, faculty and staff about issues relating to harassment and discrimination. www.ucalgary.ca/discrimination provides information on rights, responsibilities, services and resources. Religious holidays are also included on this site as is information for the complainant, respondent, and colleagues and bystanders under the topic of Dealing with Discrimination.

The university has had the Code of Professional Ethics for Academic Staff policy in place since 1994. The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance in exercising the ethical responsibilities inherent in an academic staff position at the University of Calgary.

The Stop Racism/March 21st Committee is an ad hoc group of University of Calgary Volunteers composed of students, staff and faculty with a common interest in actively addressing racism and discrimination in society. The committee's primary objectives are to bring about a heightened awareness of the many ways racism is manifested in society at large and its pernicious effects on campus, provide different activities to engage the various constituent groups on campus and in the larger community and to support the university's goal to provide an inclusive environment for work and study which respects the dignity of all students and groups.

The Women’s Resource Centre was created to achieve equality at the University of Calgary and to create a more inclusive campus environment where each individual's agency and voice are nurtured to contribute to the collective spirit of a community where citizenship and leadership is made possible for all, regardless of gender.

The Advisor to the President on Women’s Issues makes recommendations to the President for action, and with the help of the President’s Advisory Committee on Women’s Issues, monitors results of previous recommendations, facilitates communication among university groups concerned with women’s issues, and participates in the development of employment equity policies and procedures.

The Academic Women’s Association is to advance academic women’s career development from earliest stages to post-career, through advocacy and raising awareness of women’s issues in collaboration with other equity associations on campus.

The Disability Resource Centre works collaboratively and innovatively with the campus community to create an accessible, equitable and supportive learning and living environment that enhances each student’s academic and personal development. The University of Calgary has had a Policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities since 2002 and the Nat Christie Adaptive Technology Centre offers a wide range of adaptive technology options for students with a disability.

The Native Centre supports Aboriginal students through academic advising, pre-admission advising, financial advising and advocacy, tutorial and remedial services, cultural ceremonies, and monthly gatherings.

The University of Calgary acknowledges and respects the rich diversity of our learners, their communities, cultures and traditions, and their aspirations and abilities. In order to ensure equitable access and successful participation of Aboriginal learners, the University of Calgary has instituted an Aboriginal Admissions Policy for qualified Aboriginal applicants seeking admissions to undergraduate programs.

The Centre for International Students and Study Abroad provides international students with information and resources about immigration, living in Calgary, language bank, social events etc. Students interested in studying abroad have access to opportunities and an introduction to the process. Cross cultural communication workshops are provided through the Centre.

The Campaign for Positive Space seeks to create a more welcoming place for those who study, work and live at the University of Calgary. The Campaign raises awareness of and addresses discrimination and harassment based on sexual and gender diversity and challenges the patterns of silence that continue to marginalize bisexuals, gays, lesbians and transgendered individuals. The Positive Space website address is www.ucalgary.ca/positivespace/

Although many of these activities support students, they help to create a climate that encourages diversity for both students and staff.

Many other University of Calgary policies and offices complement and build on our commitment to diversity. These include the Advisor to the President on Women's Issues, the President's Advisory Committee on Women's Issues, the Advisor on Sexual Harassment, the President's Committee on Sexual Harassment, the Policy against Sexual Harassment, the Human Resources Department Business Plan and Human Resources Consultants, the Code of Professional Ethics for Academic Staff, and the Policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities, the Principles and Procedures Relating to Disciplinary Action for Non-Academic Misconduct for Students, the Positive Space Campaign and the Stop Racism/March 21st Committee.